MasterChef Australia 2019: The Top 24 Revealed
After two incredible nights, the judges have selected the Top 24 for Season 11, featuring some of Australia's best who hope to take out the title of MasterChef for 2019.
While the judges were wowed with a ton of incredible dishes and served up a few second chances along the way, we now have our full line-up of hopefuls who will battle it out against pressure tests, mystery boxes and the occasional surprise guest to hopefully take home the top prize.
Here's everything you need to know about the MasterChef Australia top 24 for 2019:
Abbey Rose, 28, NSW
Abbey spends her days surrounded by specialty ingredients, equipment and tools as a buyer for Essential Ingredient, which she feels might give her a quiet advantage in the competition.
While she may be a seafood whiz, Abbey worries that the intense time constraints of the MasterChef kitchen may give her a bit of trouble. Still, she's planning to power through in the hopes that one day she can open up a cafe in the Hunter Valley where she'll showcase seasonal produce and ways to create reduce waste in the kitchen.
Anushka Zargaryan, 49, VIC
Anushka moved from Armenia to Australia almost 20 years ago, and when she first arrived she relied on cooking shows to show her how to follow a recipe without having the language skills.
Her love of food has been with her since the age of 10 when she attended her first cooking classes, and now she sees the challenges of desserts as one of her creative outlets.
Ben Trobbiani, 24, SA
Ben describes his cooking style as modern Australian, though he loves celebrating other cuisines, especially inspired by his dad's love of Italian cooking.
Hoping to one day run a small café of his own, Ben plans to wow the judges with his ability to balance and pinpoint flavours as he continues to experiment with modernist techniques.
Blake Werner, 23, VIC
Blake has a nice little advantage up his sleeve, he's been around the industry for a while, with his parents owning a Spanish restaurant in Melbourne. Working front of house and behind the bar, Blake has always had a love of food -- from learning the basics of Italian cooking from his mum to finding his strengths of breaking down meat and seafood.
Christina Laker, 29, QLD
For Christina, her passion for cooking -- especially desserts and sweets -- began when she would bake beside her mum. Inspired by the likes of Maggie Beer and Jamie Oliver, Christina hopes to one day develop her own recipes.
There might be just one thing standing in her way: keeping her bench tidy during pressure challenges. But the mum of two is keen to head into the MasterChef kitchen and show off her love of seasonal produce, local ingredients and earthy flavours.
Dee Williams, 37, VIC
Dee grew up in a boarding school in Sri Lanka, so according to her, all her meals were provided. It wasn't until her mum would encourage her to read cookbooks and learn traditional Sri Lankan and Indian dishes that she really began to find her passion.
Now Dee, who describes herself as a savoury cook "capable" of sweet dishes, is planning to conquer the MasterChef kitchen to follow her dream of establishing a cooking school that teaches Sri Lankan cooking alongside the other cuisines she's come to love since moving to Australia in 2007.
Derek Lau, 26, WA
Derek is no stranger to the challenges the MasterChef judges may throw at the contestants this year, in fact, last year he attempted to recreate Katherine Sabbath's Birthday Cake. Ultimately impressed with the result, the bake took him two whole days, a luxury he won't have in the pressure tests to come.
Still, Derek, who preferences sweets but wowed the judges with his dumplings in his first cook, spent a lot of time with his mum growing up, picking up all the tips and tricks he can which he hopes will help him get to the end of the competition.
Huda Al Sultan, 34, SA
Huda and her family moved to Australia in 2007, leaving their home of Saudi Arabia behind. Moving down under brought a whole new world of dishes and ingredients to Huda, who said food has always been a key to connecting with others for her.
With a passion for inspiring young women, Huda also hopes to start cooking classes which pay homage to her Middle Eastern roots, but also embraces other cultural influences she's been able to pick up along the years.
Jess Hall, 28, NSW
Jess has loved cooking since the days when she'd get home from school, rush to the kitchen and start dinner before her mum would get home from work. Describing herself as a 'jack of all trades, master of none', Jess worries that her strengths in the kitchen could also be her weakness, but she's still confident.
While Jess hopes the MasterChef experience will lead her to get experience in some professional kitchens, her big dream is to hopefully open a market stall where she can sell her own butter, sauces and spice mixes.
Joe Alhern, 22, WA
While Joe may be trying to reach his dreams of competing in the MasterChef kitchen, this isn't his first brush with fame! According to the Digital Production Assistant, he starred as a zombie in the John Butler Trio's "Only One" music video.
Okay so, despite trying to feed on brains, Joe comes from a self-taught generation, learning through trial and error, research and -- of course -- YouTube tutorials. While he loves a savoury cook, Joe's wary about diving into desserts but thinks he'll be able to keep a level head through some of the pressure tests.
Kyle Lyons, 29, WA
Kyle works in a brewery, so he knows that there's nothing more important than matching a good meal with a great beer. His love of cooking began with his mum showing him all the basics, and then -- you guessed it -- trying to cook along with dishes from other seasons of MasterChef.
Now, giving the competition a shot, Kyle hopes to get far in the competition and eventually gain some experience in commercial kitchens, hoping to one day open his own microbrewery.
Larissa Takchi, 22, NSW
For Larissa, food has always been deeply connected with family. Coming from a big Lebanese family, she said that some of her favourite memories were from helping her aunts in the kitchen preparing dishes.
Hoping to eventually open a wine bar, Larissa says while she may be the most proficient in Lebanese cuisine, she's covered Asian, Italian and French and feels confident plating up both sweet and savoury creations.
Leah Milburn-Clark, 22, VIC
Citing Heston Blumenthal as her main inspiration, 22-year-old Leah has a massive passion for intricate desserts and molecular cooking -- telling the judges her mum usually just calls it "a bit wanky".
Nabbing the final apron of the competition, Leah is out to prove that she belongs in the competition, and hopes to wow the judges with her level-headedness going into pressure tests.
Mandy Hall, 51, SA
Mandy is passionate about where food originates and meeting food producers in an attempt to better understand dishes. Last year she went on a two-week residency with a fermentation expert. Now Mandy hopes to take all that knowledge and apply it in the MasterChef kitchen.
While she's a gun in the savoury dish department, Mandy hopes to overcome her fear of technical desserts -- especially when it comes to gels and foams.
Monica Mignone, 27, VIC
Monica's passion for food came from an unlikely start: a broken foot while playing basketball. After that, she began to learn from her Nonna and Mum, two of the best bakers she knows.
While sweets are obviously her favourite to make, Monica says she's worried about coming up against unfamiliar cuisines and flavours like that in Korean and Indian dishes. Still, she hopes to fight her way through her MasterChef journey to one day lead cooking classes designed for families, with a space to sell her Italian street food sweets, of course.
Nicole Scott, 24, QLD
Much like Mandy, Nicole is slightly worried when it comes to technical desserts elements like gels and foams, but looks forward to showing off her skills breaking down seafood and working with proteins.
Nicole has been passionate about food for years, even naming her Yorkshire Terrier after Massimo Butturo, and she hopes to combine those loves one day opening a pet-friendly winery.
Sandeep Pandit, 37, VIC
Born in Kashmir, Sandeep and his family were forced to migrate to Bangalore, which is where he explains his passion for cooking really took off. Food has been central to everything Sandeep knows, as he explains it. And with some lessons from his mum, Sandeep learned how to cook with what they had available.
Watching MasterChef Australia while in Bangalore, a move to Australia in 2016 meant he was able to bring his skills with spices to the kitchen -- hoping to set the judges hearts (and mouths) on fire.
Simon Toohey, 32, VIC
Simon is already an established cocktail bartender, taking home the titles of the best cocktail menu and best high volume cocktail bar from the Tales of the Cocktail awards in New Orleans a few years ago. Now he's got his sights set on a different title: MasterChef.
With his background in creating cocktails, Simon says his strengths come from balancing flavours and hopes to eventually open a vegan smokehouse.
Steph De Sousa, 45, NSW
Steph and her family lived in Vanuatu for a few years and, while she was working as a hair and make-up artist for weddings, Steph became more inspired in the kitchen. Learning more about fresh produce and local ingredients and markets, Steph began to discover a love for cooking from scratch.
Confident when it comes to sweet and savoury dishes, Steph hopes her versatility in the kitchen will see her getting to the end of the MasterChef competition.
Tati Carlin, 49, VIC
Born in Indonesia, Tati loves to create curries, which she knows will be her strength heading into the MasterChef competition, though she admits she's more wary of desserts and how she'll perform during the dreaded pressure tests.
Still, the 49-year-old hopes the competition will give her the lessons she needs to, one day, host Indonesian cooking lessons in her own home before eventually expanding into a commercial kitchen of her own.
Tessa Boersma, 27, QLD
Tessa describes her food style as "classic, with a twist", and believes her strengths to be working with seafood as well as balancing flavours. Confident when it comes to proteins and seasonings like herbs and spices, Tessa also admitted she's less confident when it comes to some of the intricate desserts the competition may throw her way.
Still, Tessa hopes to take out the top prize and ultimately open up her own farm cafe with an emphasis on using local, seasonal produce from south-east Queensland.
Tim Bone, 33, VIC
For Tim, one of life's greatest joys is a toasted sandwich. Inspired by a recent trip to New York City -- Tim got engaged to his now-wife but more importantly also got to enjoy some of the city's finest grilled cheese sandwiches, inspiring him to open his very own toasties food truck.
If you haven't already guessed, Tim isn't the kind of chef looking to make things too fancy. Inspired by chefs like Jamie Oliver, Maggie Beer and the late Anthony Bourdain, Tim hopes he can wow the judges with his good, honest food.
Walleed Rasheed, 38, VIC
For Walleed, heading into the MasterChef kitchen means leaving his twin 5-year-old daughters to battle it out for that top title, but his competitive background in sports hopes to be an advantage as he brings his love of cooking.
Hoping to eventually open a fusion dessert bar, fusing Middle Eastern and Western flavours, Walleed has already gotten a headstart, selling his homemade sweets at local markets.
Yossra Abouelfadl, 36, NSW
Citing Nigella Lawson and Jamie Oliver as her culinary icons, Yossra began attempting to perfect their recipes -- watching their shows and buying their cookbooks -- before finding her skills in giving traditional recipes a twist.
While Yossra describes herself as a savoury cook she isn't too worried about sweet dishes and hopes to use the MasterChef journey to eventually open a restaurant with dishes inspired by her Egyptian heritage, with her characteristic modern twists.
MasterChef Australia airs Monday to Thursday nights at 7.30. Only On 10 And WIN Network. Miss an episode? Catch up on 10 Play or 10 All Access!
All images: Network 10.